The end: He was a walking earthquake

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It was not the explosive, obvious things that did it. The end was precipitated by the small things, accumulated over time, and by the long, slow erosion of trust and repeated breaking of promises. No, maybe the promises were not believed in the first place, but each time they rang more and more hollow.

The year had been a tug-of-war between his manic neediness, which always drove him to the exact kind of madness that drove her further and further away, and led her to feeling she had been used. She grew more distant with each episode of recklessness he displayed. It used to hurt but became instead an annoyance, an alarm clock of the brain, set to “snooze” until the next time madness set in.

Guilt had been a driver – this guilt-driven need to be a caretaker, to help set an unsteady man back on his feet. She imagined, wrongly, that smoothing the path would make it easier to stand on. He was a walking earthquake.

But care, too, was a part. But the actual care only went one way, at least in action. Everything else was empty words.

The litany of grievances was endless, but after a lengthy limbo, she simply wanted to be free of him, of all of it. It was nothing but trouble.

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